2 Replies Latest reply on Feb 13, 2007 9:31 AM by PeterVanDemark

    Table format problems in CHM file

    PeterVanDemark
      THis is precipitated by VIsta not supporting WinHelp properly. I am experimenting with compiling Word-based docs into CHM help, and found two problems. Indented bullet lists are a minor problem, but the major problem is tables. I have used tabs to align two-column tables, and when compiled into CHM help the tab becomes just a space, so there is no alignment or hanging indent for the second column. Also, I use styles for the title and bottom of tables that have have borders, and the borders are indented several inches.

      For tables with three or more columns I long ago found that I had to use Word tables to get proper alignment, because multiple tabs don't compile properly in WinHelp help. Those usually compile correctly in CHM help, but sometimes the style with the borders has that same indent problem (probably an issue of whether the border is applied to the table, paragraph, or cell).

      So, any suggestions on how to get the table to compile right in CHM help, without turning hundreds of tables in thousands of topics into Word tables? Thanks in advance.
        • 1. Re: Table format problems in CHM file
          RoboColum(n) Level 5
          Hi Peter and welcome to our community. Can I ask how you have imported your winhelp source? It sounds like you've imported the Word files. If so, Word's source code doesn't live too well with RHs and the results as you've found can be problematic. You can check out this article on Peter Grainge's site for some tips. You could also try importing the .HLP file instead of the .DOC files. This worked almost seemlessly for me when I converted many moons ago.
          • 2. Re: Table format problems in CHM file
            PeterVanDemark Level 1
            > Can I ask how you have imported your winhelp source? It sounds like you've imported the Word files.

            I tried compiling directly from the Word docs, using the SIngle Source Layouts in RoboHelp for Word X5, into HTML Help (creating a CHM file). I was optimistically hoping that it would end up looking the same as compiling into WinHelp (creating an HLP file).

            > You could also try importing the .HLP file instead of the .DOC files. This worked almost seemlessly for me when I converted many moons ago.

            I tried importing an HLP file into RoboHelp for HTML but got a complete hash: styles changed, multicolumn tables with merged cells badly misaligned, topic order and ToC apparently lost, etc.

            I will study the article that you linked me to, and the M J Plaster article, to see if I can find a smooth path into HTML-based help. I am not looking forward to editing thousands of topics just because Microsoft refuses to maintain WinHelp. Thanks for your advice.